Israel to erect pink-triangle monument to gays persecuted by Nazis

TEL AVIV, Israel -- Israel plans to honor the gays who were arrested, sent to prison or concentration camps, experimented with and tortured, then killed by the Nazis during the Holocaust.

Between 1933 and 1945, more than 100,000 gay men were arrested by the Nazis and about half of them were convicted and sentenced to prison. Although records are sketchy, World War II experts estimate that 5,000 to 15,000 of those gay prisoners were sent to concentration camps. According to Wikipedia, "leading scholar Rüdiger Lautmann believes that the death rate of homosexuals in concentration camps may have been as high as 60%. Homosexuals in the camps were treated in an unusually cruel manner by their captors."

Not only did the Nazis abuse the gay men, but so did other prisoners. Some gay men were beaten to death in the camps. Some were used for target practice by SS soldiers, who aimed at the pink triangles that the gay men were forced to wear to designate that they were homosexuals.

The persecution of gays by the Nazis remained little known for decades, and it wasn't until 2002 that the German government apologized to the gay community. In 2005, the European Parliament approved a resolution on the Holocaust that finally acknowledged the persecution of gays.

The pink triangles would become a symbol for the modern gay community. And the Israel monument will include the pink triangle when it is erected later this year in central Tel Aviv in Meir Park, not far from the city's Gay Center. according to haaretz.com.

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